dear taiwan

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Dear Taiwan,

It has been a whirlwind of two months. I feel like we just started to get to know each other and I am really quite sad to leave you, but glad that I will carry you with me in a piece of my brain reserved for nostalgia and other such unnecessary but oh-so-important dramatics.

Thank you.
Thank you for making me uncomfortable. I have not often been the visual or vocal minority – it is humbling and kind of sad some days and wonderfully difficult.
Thank you for your fruit. Glistening, fleshy, sweet, it was almost obscene how much I relished it.
Thank you for your people. Smiling, metro-crowd pushing, umbrella gifting, bowing – not perfect by any means. But mostly, genuinely, richly, and warmly GOOD.
Thank you for your dumplings. They are the perfect Saturday afternoon after a Friday NIGHT food. I will miss them oozing savory juice from underneath delicate carbohydrate rich wrappers.
Thank you for your humility. The jazz clubs are un-pretentious, the dance clubs are FUN, the curious stares I get for being of different skin are just that – curious.
Thank you for your green. I don’t think I’ve ever used that word so reverently nor inadequately before trying to describe your mountains.
Thank you for your water. We dove into tiny pools at the ends of gorges, sat is bubbling brooks mid river, swam in salty stinging oceans, showered in thundering waterfalls and stopped just short of becoming amphibious.
Thank you for your ridges. My thighs feel thundersously strong and my eyes fish-wide from looking out onto so many sweeping vistas.
Thank you for 7-11. Ice cream, MRT cards, ramen, oh my!
Thank you for your rough edges – I hated the cigarettes, and the mosquitoes hated me, but it was a dash of reality in our two month long dream.
Thank you for your noodles. In soup and cold with peanut sauce and stir fried. And buns. And bread. I should rephrase – thank you for your carbohydrates.
Thank you for your elderly. Whether they were dancing in the park across our hotel to “All About that Bass”, gathering to practice silent Tai chi at 7 am, ogling me while doing Insanity, or hiking up Elephant Mountain before the sun rose, they were a friendly, motivating, kind, and genuine presence.
Thank you for teaching me about you. Thank you for teaching me about me.


idea stolen from my friend Maika’s thank you note to the serengeti on huffpost

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